There’s no secret that the UCF Knights have taken advantage of the new Transfer Portal system, as Head Coach Gus Malzahn added valuable pieces to the depth chart. UCF now has a shot to make a run at the American Athletic Conference championship.
For 2022, the Knights are really talented at wide receiver and running back, but the tight end position needed more talent and especially depth.
Size: 6’4, 240-pounds
Position: Tight End
Class: RS Senior
Gamble was a key off-season addition that transferred to UCF in January after being a part of the Florida Gators the last five seasons (2017-2021). Despite playing behind the productive touchdown machine and current Atlanta Falcon tight end Kyle Pitts, Gamble still recorded 48 receptions, 632 receiving yards and seven touchdowns for the Gators during his time in Gainesville.
During the 2021 season, Gamble started 12 games, while recording 31 catches, 414 yards and four touchdowns. He was tied for the most touchdown receptions on the team.
Prior to his time as a Gator, Gamble was a highly recruited tight end out of Miami (Fla.) Southridge. He held various Power Five offers from Alabama, Florida, Miami, and more.
Gamble will serve in a similar role with the Knights as he did with the Gators. He possesses the ability to line up on the outside while providing an extra blocking addition to an already experienced offensive line. Malzahn will have options when pairing Gamble with redshirt-junior tight end Alec Holler, who finished fifth in both receiving yards (192) and catches (19) last season.
The UCFast mindset should be in full effect with the potential production from the running backs and wide receiver, and Gamble adds to the riches. Gamble understands how to use his speed and leverage to his advantage when running routes against linebackers.
Red Zone Threat
One thing UCF has lacked over the previous years is a formidable weapon at tight end. The Knights haven’t had such a threat since the trio of Jordan Akins, Michael Colubiable, and Jordan Franks, who all were members of the magical undefeated 2017 team.
Gamble has the upside and experience to be UCF’s key offensive addition, especially near the end zone. The Knights made 58 trips to the red zone last season with just 42 of those resulting in touchdowns.
There’s no doubt with his size and athletic abilities that he can make a tremendous impact on the red zone passing game for whoever is behind center. Gamble possesses the physical skills to make one-on-one catches that put points on the scoreboard much like a big-bodied receiver.
Gamble has the opportunity to showcase his array of skills for future NFL scouts, via the variety of ways he is used in the UCF offense. Gamble will help Malzahn and Offensive Coordinator Chip Lindsey spread the football around and create mismatches, including using Gamble and Holler in the same personnel packages.
When the Knights run the football with Isaiah Bowser, Johnny Richardson, and other talented runners, Gamble is going to be an asset. His receiving skills will keep defenses from stacking the box against the run as well. Finally, look for Gamble to be used in two-tight end sets with Holler that allows for more offensive variety than last season.